Thursday 22 February 2018

Leaving Cert 2012: Students upbeat after higher level Biology paper

Katherine Donnelly

Katherine Donnelly

STUDENTS at one school were tired but upbeat after the Leaving Certificate Biology Higher Level paper.



Susan Silke of the Institute of Education described the short questions on the paper as “reasonable”, although she said the labelling of the diagram in Q3 (a) was unclear for some “.



She said Section B examining the practical side of the course was “fair”.



Aspects of seven different practical experiments were examined in Question 7, requiring students to have a good knowledge of a wide range of practical experiments, she said.



However, in Section C Question 10 was “difficult” as “the requirement to name two types of nitrogenous base found in DNA would have challenged the very best biology students.”



She added that Question 10 (b) (iv) required students to truly read the question while the use of language in part c ii) in this question caused some confusion.



Ms Silke described Question 12 as somewhat of a throwback to the old biology syllabus. “Students may not have been familiar with the graph that was presented, but the related questions were fine”.



She had a quibble about Question 15 (c ) (ii), which asked students to explain an number of terms in the context of ‘homeostasis’, one of which was ’active transport’.



“This requirement is not on the syllabus” she said.



Ms Silke said there was “nothing too dramatic” at ordinary level.



“Students were very happy the topics and questions that were asked.”



The practical questions in particular were well received.



* Don’t miss tomorrow’s print edition of the Irish Independent for exclusive in-depth analysis of today’s Leaving Cert papers



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